Smart Grid News reported on National Grid's comprehensive smart grid pilot project in Worcester, Massachusetts in September. You may remember: it's the project that was actually developed in partnership with its customers. Now, with a successful 5,000 meter early field trial under its belt, National Grid is set to add 10,000 smart meters and begin full deployment of the pilot early this year with a full launch planned for early 2014.
The pilot, involving 15,000 customers, is intended to evaluate integrating home automation, dynamic pricing and distribution automation to enhance reliability of service, and give customers a number of tools to increase their awareness of how they use energy and to help them save money. The project also includes a heavy customer education and involvement component. Participating customers can choose their level of involvement and choose the options they want.
And for the expansion, National Grid has picked 13 companies and services which Cheri Warren, VP for asset management with National Grid, describes as "our smart grid 'dream team'." She commented "They are the best and brightest in their respective disciplines and share our vision for delivering exceptional benefits for customers. We are excited to have them on board as we make progress toward full deployment of the pilot."
Bridge Energy Group was selected for project management and integration services, and readers will doubtless recognize all or most of the names on National Grid's team:
Itron, Cisco, General Electric, Verizon Enterprise Solutions, IBM, Wipro, CEIVA Energy, GridMaven, Navigant, SmartMark Communications, S&C Electric and Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories.
During the early field trial, Itron, Cisco and National Grid worked together to test and demonstrate the project's new IPv6 communication network.
In addition to metering, communications and related new technologies, the pilot also provides National Grid the opportunity to study integrating renewable energy, EV charging stations and linking energy storage to existing renewables projects.